Apple just released what it claims is the “smallest, thinnest and lightest 5G phone in the world.”
With dramatic James Bond-like music playing in the background at Tuesday’s virtual launch event, Apple opened a metal briefcase to reveal the iPhone 12 mini.
It has the same features as the iPhone 12, including 5G, a dual camera system, and phone-protecting ceramic shield material. But the mini justifies its name with a 5.4-inch display and a $699 price tag.
It will go on sale November 13, a couple of weeks later than the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro, which will be available later this month.
“After years of phones getting progressively bigger, Apple is reversing the trend by offering a flagship product in a smaller package,” said Ben Wood, head of research at CCS Insights. “I think it’ll be a hugely popular move.”
At $100 less than the flagship iPhone 12, the mini is priced the same as rival smartphones such as the new Google Pixel 5 and the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE. And its display is slightly larger than the 4.7-inch iPhone SE, the cheapest Apple smartphone currently on the market with a starting price of $399.
Along with a smaller flagship smartphone, Apple also unveiled its biggest iPhone ever.
The iPhone 12 Pro Max, which goes on sale on the same day as the mini starting at $1,099, has a 6.7-inch display and enhanced camera and software features.
Apple’s long-awaited foray into 5G is notable, and the company appears to be trying to ensure users at all points on the price spectrum have upgrade options. But with 5G networks still relatively nascent and analyst estimates indicating users are somewhat reluctant to jump over just yet, it remains to be seen how many actually make the switch because of that capability.
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